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How to increase your Mac storage

In this article, I am going to show how you can increase your Mac storage. You might be wondering how you’ve used so much space already when your Mac has such a huge hard drive. Well, part of it is because as hard drives get bigger, so do the files we save.

Pictures and videos are higher resolutions. Music files are of higher quality. And apps are more powerful. The long and the short of it is – no matter how much hard drive space you have, it will never be enough. But, all hope is not lost don’t worry. I’m going to show 7 tips and tricks to help you free up some space on your Mac.


1. Remove large and old files

This might be the most obvious of the batch, but that means it works. Oftentimes the files taking up the most space are the ones we don’t use frequently, if at all. Files like movies or photos you don’t want to delete, but don’t need all the time. How do you find them? You can start looking for large files in Finder. Some will be obvious but some not. You’ll be surprised at how many astronomically large folders lurk somewhere in-between categories.

That’s why I usually use a little app to help me out. It’s called CleanMyMac X and it has a nice tool to search for old and gigantic files. Even though today we’re only talking about its declutter features to help you get rid of unneeded files. CleanMyMac also protects your computer from malware and monitors its overall performance. try it out for free!

  • Once you have CleanMyMac X, just click Large and Old Files in the sidebar. Let it scan your hard drive and show you the largest files it can find.
How to increase your Mac storage

  • Then you can right-click, or hold down Control on your keyboard and click on a file to Reveal it in Finder. Done!
Now, you can move the file to an external hard drive or cloud service. And then, delete it from your Mac’s hard drive.


2. Uninstall unused apps

Tip Two The apps you have on your Mac can also take up quite a bit of space. They also have their supporting files which amount to many gigs. So, if you haven’t used an app for, say, 3-month, it’s time to lose it. And macOS has a great feature to help you see what’s installed and the last time you used it.

  • All you need to do is > click the Apple icon in the top left.
  • Then, click About this Mac, then Storage.

How to increase your Mac storage

  • And hit the Manage button.

How to increase your Mac storage
  • Now, click Applications in the sidebar.
  • When you see an app you want to get rid of, just click on it and hit the Delete button at the bottom.
How to increase your Mac storage


3. Empty the trash

Most times, deleting files is not the problem. It’s emptying your trash after you delete them. The size of your trash can balloon up quite quickly and you might be surprised to see just how much trash you really have By the way, did you know: on macOS Big Sur, the traditional Trash has actually been renamed into Bin. Just like on Windows. I find this unsettling. Anyways, to empty your trash.

  • Just right-click or hold down control on your keyboard and click on the Trash Can icon in your dock.
  • And then hit Empty Trash.


4. Clean up the Downloads folder

The downloads folder is like a time capsule of files you once needed. But there’s a good chance you don’t need most of those files anymore.

  • Select the List view and sort everything by size.
  • Clean up the download clutter and watch your storage space free up.

How to increase your Mac storage


5. Remove System Junk

The sneaky thing about your storage space is that it’s not just your files eating it up. There are metafiles or support files that could be hogging up your space too. Things like cache files, logs, old iOS backups, or even app installers. Again, I’ll show you how to dig them out with CleanMyMac. I’ll also get rid of them for you too.

  • In the CleanMyMac X app click System Junk from the sidebar and let it scan your hard drive.
  • When it’s done, you can just click the clean button and let CleanMyMac get rid of everything it thinks you don’t need.

How to increase your Mac storage

Each time I run this, it returns pretty scary amounts of clutter. You can also click Review Details to choose which files you want to remove.


6. Use Optimize Storage feature

Another great macOS feature is Optimize Storage. It automatically removes movies and TV shows you’ve already watched using the TV app. 

  • To turn it on, all you have to do is again click the Apple icon and About this Mac.
  • Then, click the Storage tab then the Manage button.
How to increase your Mac storage
  • And hit Optimize.
How to increase your Mac storage

That’s it!


7. Delete unneeded screenshots

If you’re like me, you probably take screenshots of things when you need them. But then, never delete any of them. You can use the Stacks feature to quickly collect all of your screenshots and help you remove them.

  • Go to your Desktop, right-click somewhere in the middle of the Desktop. You will see the menu that says “Use Stacks.” Click that.
How to increase your Mac storage
  • Now click on the ScreenShot stack on your Desktop.
  • Then, you can select and drag those files to the Trash. 
And that’s how you free up storage on your Mac.

How to increase your Mac storage

if you tried any of these tricks and also found this article helpful, let me know how much space you saved in the comments.

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